Tag Archives: Leo Laporte

Got Windows 7 ? .. find out how to unlock the special features

This was discussed last week on Leo Laporte’s TWIT podcast featuring Paul Thurrott and Within Windows blogger Rafael Rivera discussing Microsoft PDC and Windows 7.

Rafael stumbled upon the unlock while looking thru the mounds of stuff provided at PDC and posted the how to on his blog. Way to go Rafael 2 points for you!

read more | digg story

You should also check out Ed Botts follow up story.


Flickrslidr – Auto created slide show with Leo Laporte and Ambermac

I was reading an excellent post on “Top 10 tips for saving time building websites“. I like them all (although I prefer Jing for screen capture).

One of the tips was flickrslidr.com

I was totally impressed … I thought I would have to upload a bunch of pics .. or it would make a slide of my pics. NO! What is does is auto create a slide show (which you can embed in your web page) from all shared flickr photos based on the tag you select and how people tagged their photos.

How to do it!

How to auto create and embed a slideshow of your tag

How to auto create and embed a slideshow of your tag

Tags insert related pictures from flickr that are tagged with that name. Results are phenominal!

Once you have the code you can copy and paste it onto your web page or create a text document blank web page and paste it between body and /body and save the text document as anyname.htm

The results of using the tag leolaporte and ambermac are below … better relevance than a Google search for their pictures … (and Leo makes some amazing faces)

Leo Laporte auto generated slideshow.

Amber MacArthur auto genreated slideshow.

Backups on external drives .. recommendations

I wrote this in response to a question on a CNET post … I thought it would be pertinent here also.

Ben … first of all … don’t believe what they tell you … SIZE does matter!

You’d be surprised how fast that space fills up once you have it available.

Before I get to the recommendations I feel obligated to say that any backup solution should include off site storage … If your house burns down or you get burglarized .. you’ve got bupkiss! So, I suggest getting two 500gb usb external drives … if you’re a clever shopper you can find them around $100 each. The price difference for anything smaller is negligible. (you might even find 750gb’s for that amount. Take one to work with you and leave it there… then swap them out once a week.

I recommend Seagate, Maxtor or Western Digital … they are generally more reliable than off name brands. Also a note … stay away from “refurbished” or “Factory renewed” they will have a much shorter warranty and tend to break the week after the warranty has expired. Some drives may have some backup software included on the drive.. in my opinion that software sucks … (pardon my french).

As far as the backups I recommend doing 2 things.

Really what you want to save is you music, your videos, your email, and your documents. That is the important stuff! The best thing to do when you have a drive fail or a virus infect your system is to wipe the drive and reinstall the operating system and then copy your backed up data back on to it.

As a backup method … Microsoft has a free program called synctoy .. I’ve been using synctoy 2 beta .. which has been very stable for me (I heard Paul Thurrott recommend it). You select the folders in each location and the program synchronizes those 2 folders. There are several additional options you can choose.. you’ll understand once you see it. Once you have it set up you can also create a scheduled task to run daily or weekly etc. That’s it… like that Ronco Rotisserie Oven commercial “just set it and forget it”.

The second part is to make an exact image of your entire drive. Obviously this takes up more space on your storage and you should make a new updated image periodically. The advantage is that if something bad happens you pop in the boot Cd for the program and answer a few questions and in about 5 or 10 minutes your drive is back to exactly the way it was when you made the image . Ideally you would make one of these on a clean install with all the programs you normally use installed and the settings tweaked the way you like them … and Microsoft updates current. This saves a lot of time versus having to reinstall all your programs and settings again in the future. Acronis True Image or Norton Ghost are the programs I would recommend. Some of these programs will allow you to browse the image file as a hard drive and restore individual files or folders. Now if you use Vista its important to pay attention to which version you buy … older versions won’t work with Vista.

So that’s my opinion … and I think Leo Laporte would agree with me. Leo?

A really meaty TWIT (151) … Patrick Norton gets 5 five stars.

I listen to the TWIT podcast each time its produced … I always like them .. but this one was particularly meaty … and I’m not just talking about Dvoraks suitcase sausages.

In my opinion Patrick Norton really made that show (151). His comments and discussions were right on  … Patrick tells it like it is … no sugar coating.

Isp’s dropping Usenet, FCC prohibiting Comcast BitTorrent blocking, Ebay paypal fraud … and Dvoraks meat smuggling.

Leo asked his twitter army to follow Patrick and it went from 800 followers to 13500 in about 5 minutes. Amazing!

Listen to it …

Read the Show notes …

Kudos to everyone … I hope Leo has Patrick on more often.


You’ve probably seen some of these headlines “Comcast throttling bit torrent” “Verizon shutting down Usenet Newsgroups” “RIAA cracks down on Piracy” “Time Warner testing bandwidth caps in Texas”…

I’m afraid … I’m very afraid. I am constantly worried about who’s going to win this battle … Cable companies or the consumers. It looking to me like the consumers are going down without even entering the ring … fact is they don’t even know there’s a fight.

As with all things technology the net is changing fast, too fast for some … and consumers aren’t paying attention.

Sure … most people are just living their lives … maybe they look up some movie info or search for old friends, read a blog or two. To them the net works fine. It’s not that they don’t want to use all the conveniences the net has to offer … they just flat out aren’t aware of them.

For instance … you can print postage and ship a package from your house and even schedule the post man to pick it up … no gas guzzling trip to the post office to wait in line.

You can pay your bills online on exactly the day they are due. It doesn’t cost anything … no stamp … no more late fees … you even earn more interest.

Drop that $75 a month cable subscription (save $900 a year) … if you have a PC and a TV with a VGA input (like the most HDTV’s) you can watch most TV shows available on cable for free on hulu.com or one of the many other TV providers on the net … and the commercials are shorter.

Got broadband … everyone should use VOIP (Voice Over Internet Protocol) for local and long distance phone service … you can still use your regular phone and the quality is indistinguishable from the phone company … plus you get voice mails to your email and call forwarding (no “extra” charges like the phone company) …. you can even take your phone on vacation with you. You can get a Magicjack for $20 a year …. and save that $70-$100 a month phone bill.

Backed up your computer online … house burns down…. yeah that’s really bad for the house but those cherished baby pictures you backed up online are still safe … and if you have kids those pictures are what you value and would have missed the most from that fire.

You say … all that sounds really good … so why am I so scared? I’m scared because all of that is really good and getting even better and we are going to see it ruined by corporate greed and consumer ignorance.

You’ve probably seen some of these headlines “Comcast throttling bit torrent” “Verizon shutting down Usenet Newsgroups”  “RIAA cracks down on Piracy”  “Time Warner testing bandwidth caps in  Texas”…

Those headlines are all really about the same thing. Big money media resisting change to their business model and doing a sneaky end run around the consumers … fake right … run left … phase it in.  Lets face it … what will happen to the cable providers when  all their subscribers start watching free TV on the Internet instead of subscribing to cable TV? Actually its not just TV and movies on hulu.com  … people are forgoing cable TV for online gaming, YouTube videos, Podcasts, and tons of other content like online news. Print media is in the same boat as cable TV … have you seen the size of PC Magazine’s printed edition lately … its pitiful … I’ve got a thicker directions pamphlet  with new my weed whacker.

I have said it before and I’ll say it again … “Free TV comes over an antenna. The internet is your new Rabbit Ears”. The huge difference … you aren’t limited to a 10 mile radius and 5 stations like your old rabbit ears.

So Verizon and the cable companies are working via several fronts to move you to a model where you pay them for Internet selections the same way you did for cable TV … and friends I have to tell you they will kill the Internet. Bandwidth caps will bring innovation and free TV on the Internet to a crashing halt.

They cry that costs are too high … Let’s see I paid them about $1300 a year for 10 years … hummmmm how much infrastructure did they build with my $13,000?  (You guessed right if you said none.)

Actually most large providers have deals where the actual bandwidth costs them little or nothing (according to Leo Laporte on TWIT).

Lets forget a minute about the “unlimited” service they sold you … fact is this Internet utility is  just like the local telephone service … some people use it more than others. If I remember correctly … its been quite a while … local phone service was the same amount whether you talked all day or made one phone call a month. Now they are also bemoaning Bandwidth hogs “5% of the users are using 95% of the bandwidth” to make those using the net normally look like the bad guys. Fact is eventually all those folks who are just checking email or the weather are eventually going to find out about all the other great stuff on the Internet and start using it as it was intended to be used. Then we can all be considered bandwidth hogs? Comcast-Time Warner-Verizon would be delighted if everyone just used the net for email and browsing … its like giving them $45 a month for nothing.

What they need to do is build out their network infrastructure to handle the full capacity of the subscribers  …  As it is now I think I heard they have 500 people signed up using a connection built for 25 people… ( I could be wrong please feel free to comment with actual figures).  “There is plenty of bandwidth available in the US” (According to Leo Laporte on Twit).  They need to update their network to accomodate the changing times and they need to do it with the money you and I have already been paying them for years and years on their slightly (sarcasm) overpriced services. Not to mention the huge amount of money the government gave them years ago for just such a purpose.

Somebody … please … worry with me!


The Podcasts We Juice.

We spend a lot of time in transit so we use that time to keep up with the news on our favorite podcasts. We download the podcasts with Juice podcast receiver them copy them over to an SD card for our TomTom Go 720
and listen to them over the car stereo.

Here is what we are listening to currently:

Buzz Out Loud from Cnet

Molly Tom Jason

John Dvorak et al

John Dvorak et al

Geek News Central

Geek News Central wTodd Cochrane

Amber MacArthur and Leo Laporte

Amber MacArthur

PcMag Radio

PcMag Radio

Tech Podcast

Tech Podcast

Call Leo

Call Leo


The Week in Tech

Paul Leo & Windows

Paul Leo & Windows

Between the Lines

Between the Lines

More Leo Laporte

More Leo Laporte

If listen to one that’s in the same vein as these let me know and I’ll take a look. Thanks!